BRITTNEY AND JASON Not Your Typical Destination Wedding

All photos credited to: Eduardo Reyes, ROMANZA Wedding Photography

THE SPOT: Sandos Caracol Eco Resort in Playa del Carmen, Mexico
THE THEME: Classic Formal
THE BRIDE WORE: Ivory lace sheath gown
DV SPECIALIST: Amy Wood, Romantic Planet Vacations

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a baby in a baby carriage.  That is, at least, if convention is your cup of tea. But it’s not so much for Brittney & Jason Rodych. This Calgary-based couple has been making their own rules since they started dating in 2011. Perhaps the only common thing about their story is how they first met – at a bar named Hudsons, where Jason made the first move. “She was sort of in a relationship at the time so she kept trying to deflect me to her friend,” Jason recalls, as Brittney laughs. They went on their first date the following weekend, and have been together since. In fact, it was only a matter of months before they were expecting their first child – a welcome addition to the family they had quickly established with Brittney’s two other children. “We met in November and then in February, my brother and I went to a Flames [hockey] game together,” Jason says. “After a few beers, I told him that the girl I had met only a couple of months ago was definitely ‘the one.’” Alas, Brittney always told him she’d never get married – after all, “Once you have a house and kids together, it’s basically just a formality” – so when Jason did eventually pop the question, it was not a standard proposal abounding with pomp and circumstance. Instead, after five years and two children together, he spontaneously bought a ring at the suggestion of a friend who was visiting from out of town. Within a few hours – back at Hudsons, the bar where it all began – he had the DJ play Keith Urban’s “Somebody Like You” and got down on one knee. Anything but your typical Sunday night.

Fast forward 15 months and that same song was playing as they made their way down the aisle as a married couple after their wedding ceremony, which took place at Sandos Caracol Eco Resort in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. Brittney and Jason giggle as they recall the day, which brought together 70 guests, including 14 children. “We knew right away that we wanted a destination wedding because my family is basically all in Ontario,” Brittney says. Getting everyone there from various Canadian cities was made easy thanks to the expertise of their destination wedding specialist, Amy Wood. “She just suited our personality and we clicked with her really well,” the couple says. “She kept us in the loop but took care of the details.” When it comes to the on-location coordination, Brittney and Jason liaised directly with the resort. They were warned that given the number of weddings taking place at any given time, correspondence in planning could be slow. As such, they were forced to place a lot of blind faith in the process until they finally arrived in-destination for the big event. “We got down there on a Saturday, the wedding was on the Wednesday, and our first meeting wasn’t until the Monday, “Jason explains. “Over the last six months, we’d been e-mailing back and forth but the wedding was less than a week away,

so we were a bit concerned. But when we got there, well, they know their stuff. It was very impressive.”

“Everything went off without a hitch,” Brittney adds. “I wouldn’t change a single thing about it.”

As you might expect, this was no typical beach wedding; the goal was to have a classically themed wedding that just happened to be in Mexico. Forget the beachside ceremony beneath a trellis with the ocean as the soundtrack; they instead opted for a rooftop location. Forget khaki pants, boat shoes and teal colours; bridesmaids wore navy-charcoal dresses and the groomsmen, dark grey suits with suspenders and soft-pink ties. There was no “beachy” feel to Brittney’s dress – bring on the long train; she didn’t let the location dictate her decision. And no Hawaiian shirts for guests; everyone showed up in their Sunday best. In terms of décor, chairs were white and tables were adorned with DIY markers, displaying only odd digits and photos of the bride and groom at the corresponding age. Their wedding party equalled eight, half of whom were the siblings of the bride and groom. Much to the stress of the wedding coordinator, Brittney was late for the 4 p.m. ceremony (when nature calls!), but Jason remained calm; “She’s always late for everything,” he jokes. After the formalities, guests enjoyed a cocktail hour on the beach before returning to the rooftop terrace that had been changed over for dinner and speeches, and the group danced the night away